UK’s internet use surges to record levels
UK adults are now spending more than a quarter of their waking day online – the highest on record – with services such as TikTok and Zoom seeing unprecedented growth, according to Ofcom’s latest study into the nation’s online lives.
- Adults spending record 4 hours a day online on average, as coronavirus changes communications
- Twice as many using video calls to keep in touch during lockdown
- One in three now watch online video more than traditional TV, with two in five making videos themselves
- But nine in 10 online adults have concerns around video-sharing sites and apps
Ofcom’s annual Online Nation report reveals that in April 2020, during the height of lockdown, UK adults spent a daily average of four hours and two minutes online – up from just under three and a half hours in September last year.
With people seeking new ways to keep connected, informed, entertained and fit during the pandemic, emerging video-sharing and video-calling services are surging in popularity.
TikTok, which allows users to create and share short dance, lip-sync, comedy and talent videos, reached 12.9 million UK adult visitors in April, up from just 5.4 million in January. Twitch, the popular live streaming platform for gamers, saw visitors increase from 2.3 million to 4.2 million adults.
The proportion of UK online adults making video calls has also doubled during lockdown, with more than seven in 10 doing so at least weekly. Houseparty, the app which combines group video-calls with games and quizzes, grew from 175,000 adult visitors in January to 4 million in April. But the biggest growth was seen by Zoom, the virtual meeting platform, which grew from 659,000 UK adults to reach 13 million adults over the same period – a rise of almost 2,000%.
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